Cargo trucks delayed for over 500 days at Zim border posts

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By Robert Tapfumaneyi

AUDIT obtained data on goods in transit for the period 2015 to 2018 for trucks that entered the country has shown that trucks were taking up to 586 days awaiting border clearance.

Delays in clearing goods in transit had resulted in some goods being illegally offloaded into the country, Mildred Chiri said in a recently released data by audit.

“The illegal off loaded goods will cause unfair competition (the prices would be lower) to the country’s local industry as they would have entered the country without proper duty related to their importation,” reads the AG report.

“Beitbridge border post had a truck with goods in transit which delayed for 586 days in December 2015 from exiting the country through Nyamapanda border posts.”

“The goods in transit departed Beitbridge border post on December 10, 2015 and exited through Nyamapanda border post on July 21, 2017.

“At Chirundu border, there was a transit cargo which entered the country and stayed in transit for 552 days before reaching its exit point on December 14, 2016 and exited through Beitbridge on June 22, 2018.”

In addition, “Victoria Falls border posts records showed a truck with goods in transit which entered the country in 2017 and delayed for 230 days from exiting the country through Kazungula border posts, despite the fact that the distance between the two border post was only 73 kilometres.

“The goods in transit departed Victoria Falls border on September 14, 2017 and reached Kazungula border post on May 5, 2018.”

The report further revealed that at Kazungula border post, a truck with goods in transit which delayed for 159 days in December 2017 from exiting the country through Victoria Falls border post.

“The goods in transit departed Kazungula border post on December 14, 2017 and exited through Victoria Falls border posts on May 25, 2018,” she said.

Chiri said Beitbridge and Chirundu border posts had the highest number of delays for goods in transit which occurred in year 2015 and year 2016 respectively.

“Upon enquiry with ZIMRA officials, it was noted that delays were caused by various reasons, for instance, the goods in transit which delayed for 586 days, it was established that it was as a result of a pending court case,” she said.

“Another of 552 days was due to clearing agents failing to provide documents in time for the transit cargo to be cleared from ASCUDA system.

“General reasons were given for other delays which included drivers getting sick along the way, accidents and break downs and late submissions of documents by shipping agents.”